In an earlier article I suggested that with Google now being at the helm, it was only a matter of time before the wolves started blowing at the straw house. There was little point in suing a company with no assets, but with Google as the fairy godmother suddenly the rules change.

I had assumed that our good friends at RIAA would have had their ambulance chasing lawyers on the job. I was wrong. The first serious lawsuit comes out of left field. A company that sells used tubes and ducts, and owns the URL, has filed suit.

Utube has had their URL for 10 years (that’s about 8 years more than YouTube), and they apparently rely on their web page to find new customers.

Unfortunately the YouTube takeover by Google has had an adverse effect on Universal Tube & Rollform Equipment Corporation and they are pretty annoyed right now. Their Web server is creaking at the seams with unwanted traffic from internet users mistaking ‘U’ for ‘You’.

Utube’s web hosting costs have soared from $100 to over $2,500 per month. Even worse, the huge increase in traffic has resulted in frequent outages, and a large number of ‘unwanted’ queries in their ‘more information’ section.

“Where the *&!# are all the videos???,” asks one confused visitor. Another writes “where r da videos?”

According to one report YouTube has offered $1 million dollars for the use of the domain name, however Utube want more! $2.5 million is the amount being bandied about.

One would assume that having just paid $1.65 billion for a money losing adventure, another 2 or 3 million dollars would be chump change to Google to make Universal Tube & Rollform Equipment Corporation go away.

Simon Barrett  

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